Mr David Birks > McCormicks > Harrogate, England > Lawyer Profile

First Floor, Scottsdale House
Springfield Avenue
North Yorkshire

Work Department

Dispute Resolution


David is the Head of the Commercial Disputes and Sports Litigation Team. The team offers a wide range of litigation services to both individuals and businesses, which incorporates Corporate and Commercial Recovery and Insolvency.

Before becoming a solicitor David headed up the North Yorkshire Trading Standards Consumer Advice Team and Special Investigations Team dealing with Regulatory matters and specialising in Anti-counterfeiting matters.

David has also spent time working for the Department of Trade and Industry specialising in Directors Disqualification and Insolvency. David is a member of R3.

David has significant experience with matters involving: breach of contract, unfair prejudice claims, partnership disputes, professional negligence (claimant and defendant), landlord and tenant, dilapidations claims, HM Land Registry and matters with multi-jurisdictional elements, sports disputes (arbitrations, tribunals and FA, Premier League and EFL regulatory matters). His specialisms are in insolvency  (individual and corporate) and Directors Disqualification Act Proceedings.

In relation to regulatory matters, David acts for professionals in relation to disciplinary matters, with a particular emphasis on registered pharmacists. This work is wide ranging, involving aspects including representation before professional regulators.

David brings an approach which will always be tailored to client priorities. It is always proportionate to the matter in hand and involves a cost benefit analysis at the earliest possible stage. David advocates all appropriate forms of alternative dispute resolution to seek to resolve disputes as quickly and cost effectively as possible.

David acts for a broad range of clients, including insurers, national and international corporates, entrepreneurs, large family estates, insolvency practitioners (and those facing claims by them), charities, the Premier League, Leeds United FC and professional players and managers.

David’s team can offer advice and experience in other matters such as:

  • All aspects of Commercial Litigation including business, Partnership and Company disputes.
  • Regulatory matters including Public Contract Procurement.
  • Sports and Regulatory disputes.
  • Property litigation including advising on commercial leases and property disputes.
  • Professional negligence claims.
  • Employment litigation particularly in respect of the commercial impact on business where contracts of employment are breached.
  • Mediation, Arbitration and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) – advising and guiding clients through the ADR process with a view to reducing costs of Litigation.
  • Directors Disqualification Act proceedings
  • Matters relating to Insolvency and Bankruptcy including both personal and corporate Insolvency.

Lawyer Rankings

Yorkshire and the Humber > Dispute resolution > Commercial litigation: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire

Harrogate-based McCormicks‘ offering includes contractual and construction disputes, debt recovery, professional negligence, and contentious probate. The firm has specific expertise in sports litigation, with notable clients including the Premier League, Leeds United Football Club, and Wycombe Wanderers Football Club. David Birks leads the team, having joined the firm from Newtons Solicitors Limited in November 2022. Peter McCormick OBE is a key name.

Yorkshire and the Humber > Real estate > Property litigation

McCormicks is instructed by standout clients in the sport and entertainment sectors, as well as a number of developers and landed estates, to advise on boundary disputes, possession claims, and a diverse range of contentious tenancy matters. The practice is newly led by David Birks, who joined the team from Newtons Solicitors Limited in November 2022 and excels at handling dilapidation claims and development disputes. Commercial litigator Peter McCormick maintains close relations with the firm’s sports clients, and Alex Harrison is a key contact for landlord and tenant disputes. Former practice head Philip Edmondson left in November 2022.

Yorkshire and the Humber > Finance > Insolvency and corporate recovery

David Birks leads the Harrogate-based insolvency and restructuring offering at McCormicks. The team’s practice focuses on sporting clients, with notable ongoing work for the Premier League. It also acts for and alongside local insolvency practitioners. Former practice head Philip Edmondson left for Ward Hadaway LLP in November 2022.

Yorkshire and the Humber > TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > Sport

Standing out for the profile of Harrogate-based founding partner Peter McCormick, the sports practice at McCormicks continues to provide top-tier advice to its footballing clients, while also assisting a growing number of shooting groups, rugby clubs and cycling associations. McCormick, who has previously served as chairman of the Premier League and the Football Association, continues to actively advise on the regulatory and contracting aspects of major sports club buyouts and takeovers. He co-leads the practice alongside James Towler, a key contact for corporate and commercial matters, and sports litigation expert David Birks, who joined from Newtons Solicitors Limited in November 2022. Philip Edmondson departed the group in 2022 to Ward Hadaway LLP.

London > Dispute resolution > Professional discipline

Particularly well known for football-related disciplinary and regulatory matters, McCormicks also handles SRA investigations, SDT defence matters and NPA work. Peter McCormick OBE is a widely-respected sports expert; Peter Minnikin‘s workload incorporates disciplinary work involving medical practitioners; and litigation head David Birks is a 2022 hire from Newtons Solicitors Limited.

London > TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > Sport

Harrogate-based McCormicks leverages the experience and standing of Peter McCormick, chairman of the legal advisory group of the Premier League, to advise the elite league on a range of matters, including owners’ and directors’ tests during club takeovers and acquisitions, third party ownership disputes, and the stewardship and policing of stadiums. Sports team head James Towler is also a key contact for the Premier League, taking on a number of corporate and commercial instructions, including sponsorship, media rights and data protection agreements. David Birks, head of the commercial disputes and sports litigation team, is a further name to note.